7.7/10
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A Day at the Races (1937)

Passed | | Comedy, Musical, Sport | 11 June 1937 (USA)
A veterinarian posing as a doctor, a race-horse owner and his friends struggle to help keep a sanitarium open with the help of a misfit race-horse.

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Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Dr. Hackenbush (as The Marx Brothers)
...
Tony (as The Marx Brothers)
...
Stuffy (as The Marx Brothers)
...
Gil
...
...
Leonard Ceeley ...
...
Morgan
...
...
Dr. Steinberg (as Sig Rumann)
...
Sheriff
...
Dancer
Ivie Anderson ...
Vocalist
The Crinoline Choir ...
Vocal Ensemble
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Storyline

Doctor Hugo Hackenbush, Tony, and Stuffy try and save Judy's farm by winning a big race with her horse. There are a few problems. Hackenbush runs a high priced clinic for the wealthy who don't know he has his degree in Veterinary Medicine. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Year's BIG Laugh, Music and Girl Show! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Musical | Sport

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

11 June 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Un día en las carreras  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

| (Sepiatone)| (blue tinted)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the finale, Groucho Marx sings one line of a song called "I've Got a Message from the Man in the Moon." The entire song was filmed but not used in the final cut. See more »

Goofs

When the horses head to the track, the announcer notes only eleven horses are headed to the track and that the added horse, Hi Hat, is nowhere to be seen. However, when the board was shown with the horses listed, twelve horses were initially listed for the race with two scratched and then Hi Hat added, so if Hi Hat wasn't heading to the track, there should have only been ten horses. See more »

Quotes

Whitmore: [Speaking on the phone, believes he is talking to the Florida Medical Board, but, it is really Dr. Hackenbush, pretending to be Medical Board Records Department Manager, Colonel Hawkings] I want to know about Doctor Hackenbush.
[Hackenbush, in an adjacent office, buzzes the dictograph. Whitmore goes to answer it]
Whitmore: Yes?
Dr. Hackenbush: Whitmore, you'll have to cut out that squawking. The patients are all complaining.
[Talking on the phone in a Southern accent, pretending to be Colonel Hawkings]
Dr. Hackenbush: And, eh, I hope, sir...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Julia: Farewell, My Friends, Hello (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

On the Beach at Bali-Bali
(1935) (uncredited)
Written by Al Sherman, Abner Silver and Jack Meskill
Played by Chico Marx on piano at the water carnival
See more »

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User Reviews

 
hilarious; 9/10
25 June 2001 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

I haven't seen enough of the Marx Brothers' films to say which is their best and which is their worst. I have seen Duck Soup, which I would say has to be at least one of their best, seeing that I believe it to be one of the funniest comedies ever. I have also seen A Night at the Opera, which is also often considered one of their best, often the best. I myself found it much less funny than Duck Soup. I wanted to kill myself during the musical numbers of that film.

Now I've seen A Day at the Races, the Brothers' follow up to A Night at the Opera, a smash hit in theaters. Generally, Races is considered a weak follow-up to a great film. I disagree. I liked A Day at the Races much more than A Night at the Opera (but a bit less than Duck Soup). All three Brothers are firing bullseye after bullseye. Harpo could stand to do a little bit more. He may have had the funniest role in Duck Soup. He was an utter maniac with total disregard for human life. When the Marx Brothers left Paramount for MGM, their edge was dulled down a bit. Oh well, Races still succeeds.

Also, except for the boring opera voice, even the musical numbers work here. I love to watch Chico play the piano. That's hilarious. Harpo's harp number is less good, but still not bad. The ballet sequence is also quite good. There's one more musical number that's just fantastic: the poor black folk singing "Who's that man?" as Harpo runs around playing the flute. It's somewhat shocking to see a scene like this. It does not exploit them (it may seem to now, but it was probably quite inclusive and progressive in its day), and it's a smash.


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